Because sometimes people take advantage of us…
You have nightmares, flashbacks, are irritable, or avoidant. You’ve isolated yourself or started coping in negative ways through drugs, alcohol, food, working out. You try hard not to think about it but it consumes your mind and your actions. You’re constantly on edge and hypervigilant.
Does this sound familiar to you? This is what we hear from our clients on a weekly basis. This is how sexual assault shows up in many of our clients’ lives after it has taken place.
What is Sexual Assault?
Sexual assault can mean a lot of different things. It could range from being touched in a non-consensual way. Being shown inappropriate images or videos (sexting). It could mean being raped by someone. Or, it could mean being taken advantage of when you can’t give consent or under the influence. It can also mean being manipulated or guilted into engaged in sexual acts (even in marriages).
Sexual Trauma Statistics
As posted on RAINN’s website:
- Every 73 seconds another American is sexually assaulted.
- 1 out of every 6 American women has been the victim of an attempted or completed rape in her lifetime (14.8% completed, 2.8% attempted).
- About 3% of American men—or 1 in 33—have experienced an attempted or completed rape in their lifetime.
- From 2009-2013, Child Protective Services agencies substantiated, or found strong evidence to indicate that, 63,000 children a year were victims of sexual abuse.
- The majority of child victims are 12-17. Of victims under the age of 18: 34% of victims of sexual assault and rape are under age 12, and 66% of victims of sexual assault and rape are age 12-17.
The Effects of Unprocessed Trauma…
Often, we see unprocessed trauma manifesting through:
Working through any kind of sexual trauma is tough.
Have you heard the saying “You’ll never feel 100% ready, do it anyway?” There’s something to be said about that when it comes to working through sexual trauma.
It’s important for you to do it in your own time. But, diving in and working through the pain you may feel can be very beneficial in helping you move forward. The sex and trauma therapists on our team take therapy at the speed and pace that you need.
Most people don’t actually want to work on their trauma. It’s scary, we don’t want our lives to get worse, and we don’t want to think about what happened.
For some, it does get worse before it gets better. That’s because we have to sit in front of our trauma and look at it, feel it and then walk through it. But, we’ve seen so many clients do this and get to a place where they don’t feel distressed when they think about their sexual trauma.
When we avoid working on it we often can get stuck it its hold and become controlled by the symptoms that it presents, like anxiety, depression, PTSD, nightmares, sexual challenges with ourselves or with our partner.
We’re here to help walk you through that process.
Our Approach to Sexual Trauma Treatment
Each of our therapists use an evidence based approach to guide you through your sexual trauma treatment.
The approaches we use in our practice are:
Cognitive Behavioral Therapy
Sex Therapy (specifically sensate focus)
Emotion Focused Therapy
This is Scary and Confusing, Isn’t it?
Many people feel silenced after experiencing sexual trauma.
The media often portrays rape, sexual abuse, sexual assault, and molestation as being clear cut. Crime dramas often share a story about a stranger lurking behind a bush, grabbing an individual, there was a struggle, they yelled, but they couldn’t get away.
This might be your story. Or maybe, yours was more confusing.
Statistics show that sexual assaults usually are committed by people who we know… usually really well. They can be people who others really like and care for, like your dad, your uncle, your babysitter, your teacher, your pastor, or your partner.
If you are ready to try out therapy…
Know that we are here for you to meet you where you are. We can help you move forward from the trauma that happened to you. You were never meant to do this alone!
We get that you might not be ready for therapy yet. It can feel nerve-wracking to dive into this type of therapy. It might not even feel safe for you to talk about it yet.
A great resource here in the Cincinnati area where you can call to talk about your situation anonymously around sexual assault/rape and Domestic violence / Intimate Partner Violence / Bullying / Stalking / Teen Dating Violence or even helping someone you know who is a survivor is Women Helping Women.
They offer a 24-hour hotline you can call or chat online with anonymously. They also are able to help provide you with additional free resources in the community such as a Women or Men’s shelter, free legal aid, free groups, guiding you through a safety plan, rape kit hospital accompaniment and more.
Begin Sexual Trauma Treatment…
If you’re ready to begin sexual trauma treatment to move forward from the abuse you have experienced and heal. Then, the therapists at Emma Schmidt and Associates would be honored to speak with you and share the many ways we can help you thrive. To begin counseling in Cincinnati, OH, follow these steps:
Other Services Offered at Emma Schmidt and Associates:
More to check out…
The therapists at Emma Schmidt and Associates, a Cincinnati-based therapy office, are skilled relationship and sex therapists. But, that’s not the only mental health service they offer. Our therapists treat general mental health and relationship concerns. We treat many different sexual concerns including sexual pain and erectile dysfunction, and mismatched libido. And, we offer anxiety treatment, depression treatment, EMDR, relationship and couples therapy. and affair recovery counseling, Additionally, our therapists provide online therapy in Ohio and online therapy in Kentucky. Contact our office to learn more about the many ways our team of skilled clinicians can help you thrive.